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Gulf Coast Leaders Find Environmental Troubles Intensifying

By Rhonda Miller | Published 19 Oct 2011 08:48pm | comments
Bill Walker, Executive Director of the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, left, and Alice Perry, Assistant Director of the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality, make presentations at the forum sponsored by America's Wetland Foundation.

Even as the Mississippi Gulf Coast is recovering from the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, a new environmental report finds natural disasters are intensifying.  MPB’s Rhonda Miller has more.

During a conference sponsored by America’s Wetland Foundation in Biloxi this week, the group’s senior advisor, Sidney Coffee, said climate change and rising sea level are among the increasing risks to the Gulf Coast.

"More and more intense storms are projected, and say, for instance, it used to be a storm like Katrina happened once every lifetime or two. Now storms like Katrina are projected for two of them in a lifetime," Coffee said.

The environmental changes are affecting all the Gulf Coast states. That’s why Bill Walker, head of the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, believes communities have to prepare for the impact.

"We need to modify what we do and understand that there are going to be parts of our states, probably not in Mississippi, but in some of the Gulf states, in the next 10 years or so, are just simply going to be under water, " said Walker.

The leaders, from several Gulf Coast states, are reviewing recommendations for safety and sustainability.

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Bill Walker, Executive Director of the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, left, and Alice Perry, Assistant Director of the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality, make presentations at the forum sponsored by America's Wetland Foundation.


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